Best Practices for Evaluating Self-Storage Staff: Facility Owners Get Value From Manager Assessment

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You may find the employee is expending effort into the job of which you are not aware. Maybe he’s reading industry magazines, participating in an industry forum, or attending webinars or seminars. This type of initiative might never be noticed if you don’t create an open conversation.

When to Perform an Evaluation

The biggest mistake employers often make is failing to adhere to their evaluation schedule. An owner will tell a new employee he conducts evaluations every six months, but then find himself focused on other tasks and missing the window. Not only does this illustrate a lack of follow-through, the employer loses the chance to discuss the employee’s performance.

If the manager is doing a great job, hearing so will improve morale and produce even better results. If the boss is too busy to follow up with evaluations, the employee may start to feel like he’s not valued and his great performance could start to diminish. He may even look for another job. Make the evaluation a high priority. Schedule it in writing and complete the task. It has the power to improve great employees or uncover those who need additional training.

What’s Next?

Follow-through has tremendous impact on the evaluation’s effectiveness. If you simply complete the process and carry on with regular operation, it will not have any value. The evaluation must have purpose. It can be used to determine forward-thinking strategies in improving your operation and manager performance.

Maybe your staff has some great ideas haven’t heard, and your discussion during the evaluation develops into profitable brainstorming dialogue. Perhaps manager weaknesses become evident during the process. Create action items to tackle these areas, and then follow up in 60 days to evaluate the employee’s progress.

Most important, employee evaluations should be used to improve your company. If your staff is providing great service, reward them. If they need improvement in specific areas, it’s up to you to define what’s needed and how they can be better. Employee evaluations offer self-storage owners and managers a chance to open communication and uncover ways to make the business a bigger success.

Cory Parrow is a consultant with Your Storage Team, a management company based in Southern Ontario, Canada. Your Storage Team specializes in management services and has been involved in the development of self-storage facilities for more than a decade. For more information, call 519.868.1982; e-mail cory@yourstorageteam.com.

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